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nor experience to guide them, and are often unwilling to be guided by others, whose experience may have taught them some severe, but salutary lessons. And is it not too true that many of these, have in fact, none to guide them? Is it not a fact that multitudes of young females, from twelve to fourteen years of age, are permitted by their parents to spend their time just as they please?
-to visit when, and where they please ?- to dress as they please, and all without even consulting with them, or looking for their approbation? And is it not also true, that mothers, Christian mothers—filling prominent and important stations in life, and looked up to, by great numbers, as examples, do allow their daughters in such a course of life as this, not requiring of them the least care, even of their own clothing ? nor the least assistance in any domestic avocations, however oppressive their own labor and care may be ? Surely all this, and much more, is true; and many who will probably look into this Magazine in the hope of finding some useful hints, will acknowledge it. Now let me ask, what can be expected from daughters so educated ? Allow me to tell you what may not be expected. First, gratitude may not be expected, for it will never be awarded. A kind, affectionate deportment, will seldom be witnessed ; and when it is, in all probability it will be assumed with a view to accomplish some selfish or sinister purpose.
Many mothers, thus foolishly indulgent, and blind to their daughter's best interest, are obliged to labor early and late, in order to perform all the duties requisite to keep their families neatly attired, their houses in order, to meet the claims of society, and the various obligations devolving on them as Christians. The daughter, who should be the companion of her toil, ber nurse in sickness, and her comfort and solace in sorrow, returns from her long protracted walk, and enters the parlor where every thing is arranged with the utmost care ; she throws herself listlessly into the rocking chair, or upon the sofa, her bonnet and shawl upon the table, while her gloves and handkerchief fall upon the floor. Thus seated, she sees one of her associates passing, runs to meet her, and having whiled away another half hour in idle, or perhaps mischievous conversation, re-enters the house, and goes to her chamber, and throws herself upon her bed, perhaps to read some novel, leaving her poor mother to put away her bonnet, shawl, &c., and to gather up the wilted wild flowers, and green leaves, which were also scattered by her in the parlor. Having rested awhile on the bed, she rises and seeks for her mother ; she finds her busily engaged in some useful employment. Mother, she exclaimed where is my muslin frock? It is not ironed, my dear, says the mother, it has not been possible for me to do it; your brother has been much more feeble to day, and has required most of my time, and Cloe has had no time-Not ironed ! well, I do wonder what you and the girl have been doing—I think, you may be ashamed of yourselves, you might have known I should want it. Why I'm going to the fair this evening, and what am I to do, I should like to know?
Reader, do you say this must be fiction? I wish it were so, but alas, it is a frightful truth. I will not say that the very scene here described ever occurred; but scenes of very similar character do occur daily. And where is the parent who can look upon such conduct, in a child naturally amiable, and who might have been taught to exercise the most benevolent feelings,
instead of exciting the keenest anguish? Where is the father or mother of such a daughter, who would not wish they had begun long since to lead her in the way she should
go o ? But parents, will you look upon such conduct even now, in silent sorrow? What if she is grown up, perhaps sixteen or seventeen years of age ; will you spend your time in idle or fruitless wishes or regrets, and suffer her to pursue the broad way to ruin,-ruin for time and eternity ? It is not too late for you to begin to do your duty. Resume, I entreat you, your long lost authority : take the reips of government into your own hands -converse freely, faithfully and affectionately with your child; acknowledge your own mistake, your criminal negligence, and try to convince her that she is rebelling daily, yes, hourly, against the God on whom she depends for life and all its blessings. Pray for, and pray with her; and teach her, late as it is, that she must obey you.
I would endeavor to throw out some hints respecting the conduct of young ladies, when beginning to go abroad into the world, and to mix in society ; but a letter from a father to his daughter, which I have in my possession, expresses my own views better than I can pen them myself; and if you think proper to give that, as well as what I have written, a place in your Magazine, I hope they will tend to advance the object you have in view, and one which lies very near my heart.
LETTER FROM A FATHER TO HIS DAUGHTER.
MY DEAR DAUGHTER.
“ It is one piece of advice which I think I have given you before, always to go freely to those, older than yourself, for advice, and do not be afraid that their experience has taught them too severe a prudence. Too much prudence is much safer than too little. Among your superiors too, much respect and deference is better than too little. Among your equals, too much reserve, and too little disposition to put yourself forward, will be much safer than the opposite error. For a young lady to talk too little, is much more lovely than to talk too much; to laugh too little, is better than to laugh too much, and too loud The most difficult matter of all, is for young persons of the two sexes to behave well in each other's presence. With regard to your deportment in this respect, you will probably find much erroneous sentiment, both among ladies and gentlemen. It is no unusual thing for young ladies to entertain sentiments in the highest degree dangerous to themselves, and especially to the other sex. I can give you a few rules, such as I should have been glad to receive when I was young, and which I have always intended to give my daughters freely, when they arrived at an age to need and appreciate them. One rule of no slight excellence, and yet difficult to maintain, is, not to be moved by the presence of gentlemen. To converse with them freely and without excitement, as if the company were all ladies. Too much reserve and timidity, as well as too much exhilaration, betrays an excitement on account of the presence of gentlemen, which a lady had better not indulge, and should never exhibit.
With regard to your more retired intercourse with gentlemen, as possibly
you may sometimes be left alone with one, neither take any liberties yourself, nor allow any to be taken with you, which you might not with propriety permit, were you in the presence of a room full of ladies and gentlemen. You may always feel secure, if guided by this rule. If gentlemen wish you to violate it in the slighest degree, your approbation will be at your own cost. Obedience to this rule will secure to you much more, than any less exact care, and the esteem of all men, good or bad, be their sentiments what they may. It is no uncommon thing for gentlemen to go by ladies' rules, and push their familiarities as far as they can. Let your rule be understood ; and if ever au attempt is made to infringe it, resent it, but not pettishly or rudely. Cultivate a high and noble feeling of female modesty and self respect, and let these feelings shine out on all ocoasions, firmly and decisively, if necessary,
HANNAH AND SAMUEL:
THE PIETY AND USEFULNESS OF CHILDREN TRACED TO PIOUS MOTHERS.
1. Sam. 1. 27, 28.
Having thus briefly traced the origin of the eminent piety and usefulness of Samuel, I proceed to show, from the subsequent history of the church, that similar results may ordinarily be expected, from similar maternal piety. Of course, in the investigation little can be said about the exercises of godly mothers, prior to the birth of their offspring—as these are among the secret and sacred things which rarely find their way beyond the retirement of the closet. We may however take it for granted, that when the mother has subsequently displayed the spirit of Hannah, she might with equal propriety have named her child Samuel.
Aster entering upon the investigation of this subject, I examined the biographies of several men, eminent for piety and usefulness in the Church, and could not help being struck with the fact, that in every instance their piety was traced to their mothers. I will refer you to a few. The Biography of that excellent man, Dr. Doddridge, who wrote a commentary on the New Testament, the Rise and Progress, &c. which have been so useful, says, “ I have heard him relate that his mother taught him the history of the Old and New Testament, before he could read, by the assistance of some Dutch tiles in the chimney of the room where they commonly sat, and her wise and pious reflections upon the stories, were the means of making some good impressions upon his heart, which were never worn out. And therefore this method of instruction he frequently recommended to parents."
The biographer of that eminent Christian and minister, Dr. Payson, thus writes—" To the Christian fidelity of his parents there is the fullest testi- : mony in the subsequent and repeated acknowledgment of their son, who habitually attributed his religious hopes, as well as his usefulness in life, under
God, to their instruction, example, and prayers; especially to those of his mother.”
She appears to have admitted him to the most intimate, unreserved and confiding intercourse, which was yet so wisely conducted, as to strengthen, rather than diminish, his filial reverence. His recollection of her extended back to very early childhood, and he has been heard to say, that she was very solicitious that he might be liberally educated, and receive every accomplishment which would increase his respectability and usefulness in the world : the supreme, all absorbing concern of her soul respecting him was, that he might become a child of Cod. This manifested itself in her counsels, expostulations and prayers, which were followed up with a perseverance that nothing could check. And they were not in vain. He was often known to weep under the preaching of the gospel, when only three years old. About this period too, he would frequently call his mother to his bedside to converse on religion, and to answer numerous questions, respecting his relation to God and the future world. His mother believed that he was converted in childhood.
Samuel J. Mills, the father of the A. B. C. F. M. himself a man of eminent piety and a missionary, had such a mother. His biographer writes thus—"Could we without sacrilege, enter the sanctuary of a mother's bosom, we might whisper a tale, that would account for the distinguished usefulness with which God has condescended to favor some of the best of men.
Many a godly mother can say, I had peculiar solicitude concerning this child. Even before its birth I dedicated it to the Lord, and then engaged that it should be unreservedly devoted to his glory. And when the little immortal was committed to my arms, with many prayers and tears did I renew the engagement, till it was strongly impressed upon my mind that God had heard my cry and accepted my offering. This is something more than fiction in relation to Mr. Mills. It is almost impossible to read the memoir of any minister eminent for piety, without observing that his earliest religious impressions had their source in the instruction and prayers of a pious mother."
I have in my possession two or three facts, which go to prove that when mother's have, like Samuel's, consecrated their children to the special service of God in the ministry, or as missionaries, he has not disappointed their hopes. During a recent journey, I was introduced to a lady, remarkable in the village where she lived, for piety. She had a son whom she dedicated to God, to be his minister ; and with this in view she educated him.
He passed through college, unconverted. Having finished his college course, she sent him to a theological seminary, determined to give him an education, which, if he was converted, would fit him for the ministry-and thus do all she could to qualify him for the office to which she had devoted him. He became eminently pious, and is now in the far west, one of the most eminently useful missionaries of the Home Missionary Society.
From a letter received by a young lady, in one of the villages I visited, and who has since gone on a mission, I was permitted to make the following extract. It was from a pious mother in Massachusetts. “ But to the missionaries of the Cross, I feel a twofold tie, not easily broken. About twenty
four years ago, I had my heart touched, and my zeal kindled to a flanie, that has never yet been extinguished, by reading of the trials and labors, the patient endurance of Carey and his associates. Oh how I longed to be a missionary. How I longed to do something for the heathen. I asked the Lord in all the fervency and sincerity of my heart, “What wilt thou have me to do.' The Lord whispered by his word and by his Spirit, “Thou dost well in that it was in thine heart to build me a house, nevertheless thou shat not build the house, but thy son that shall come forth out of thy loins, he shall build the house to my name. Train up children to bear my name among the Gentiles, and make up thy lack of duty towards me.' Immediately, I conferred not with flesh and blood, but fully, freely, and deliberately consecrated my infant to the Lord. How often I knelt by the cradle and told my Savior she was all his own. And when I had a son, a Samuel, entrusted to my arms, I made a full and free consecration of bim to Christ, to labor among the heathen. That son has as fully and as freely given himselt to the same work, though utterly ignorant of my feelings on the subject at the time. God added another, and yet another daughter, to my little family and they too are the Lord's, when and to what place he points out to them duty."
One more anecdote of a kindred character will suffice for the present. In one of the villages of Vermont, lived a pious mother, whose heart was greatly affected in behalf of the heathen, by reading the life of the missionary Harriet Newell. She was poor, and had neither gold or silver to pour into the treasury of the Lord. In her distress because she had nothing to give, it was deeply impressed upon her mind, that she had children whom she might devote to God, to carry the Gospel to the dying heathen. She immediately retired to her closet to pour out her soul in prayer, and to intreat the Lord to prepare and send her children into the missionary field. And what think you was the result? Already one son and two daughters are missionaries among the heathen, and another son is now longing to go, and is only detained by providential circumstances.
1. From the foregoing facts, we are furnished with one reason why there are so many more pious women than men. Various causes have been assigned for it, and among them one, pre-eminent for its untruth. I mean the common one that women are weak-minded. All that is necessary to disprove the inferiority of the female mind is to enter our schools, where they have equal advantages.
Our subject, however, gives us the true reason. The salvation of the world, under God, is intimately connected with the faith of these godly mothers.
The man is made in the nursery; and there the impressions are made which form the character, and mould the destinies of the world.
To the mother is committed the delightful and important task of giving the first impulse to the mind, which in its future progress is to guide the church or state. Now if the foundations of society are laid in holiness, what may we not hope for the superstructure?
2. Of what amazing importance is 'it that mothers should be women of eminent piety? To them I would say, what a minister once said to the